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This Week in Geek History July 25 - 31

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July 25
_306 - Constantine I proclaimed Roman Emperor Microbadge: Istanbul was Constantinople
1894 - Actor Walter Brennan Microbadge: Classic western movies fan
1954 - NFL Hall of Famer Walter Payton Microbadge: Chicago Bears fan - Walter Payton

July 26
1856 - Playwright George Bernard Shaw Microbadge: George Bernard Shaw - We don't stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing.
1875 - Carl Jung, founder of analytic psychology Microbadge: Carl Jung
1894 - Author Aldous Huxley Microbadge:  "...most men and women will grow up to love their servitude and will never dream of revolution" ― Aldous Huxley, Brave New WorldMicrobadge: "I want to know what passion is. I want to feel something strongly." ― Aldous Huxley, Brave New World
1922 - Scriptwriter/Director Blake Edwards Microbadge: Pink Panther fan
1928 - Director Stanley Kubrick Microbadge: Kubrick fan
1943 - Stones' Frontman Mick Jagger Microbadge: The Rolling Stones fan
1945 - Actress Helen Mirren Microbadge: Excalibur fan

July 27
1824 - French novelist Alexander Dumas the Younger (Camille)
1905 - Baseball player and manager Leo Durocher Microbadge: Baseball fan
1922 - Television producer Norman Lear (All in The Family)
1937 - Actor Don Galloway (Ironside)
1938 - Gary Gygax

July 28
1887 - Artist Marcel Duchamp Microbadge: Marcel Duchamp fan
1902 - Austro-British philosopher Karl Popper Microbadge: Karl Popper
1948 - Actress Sally Struthers (All in the Family)

July 29
1869 - Novelist Booth Tarkington (The Magnificent Ambersons)
1892 - Actor William Powell (Thin Man) Microbadge: Martini lover
1941 - Actor David Warner Microbadge: Star Trek movies fan Microbadge: Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn fan
1953 - Rush Frontman/Singer/Songwriter/Bassist Geddy Lee Microbadge: Rush fanMicrobadge: Rush fan
1954 - Tolkien's The Fellowship of the Ring published Microbadge: Tolkien fan
1972 - Actor/Gamer/BGG User Wil Wheaton Microbadge: “My very first friend was a warp coil.” — Wesley CrusherMicrobadge: Today on TableTop

July 30
1818 - Author Emily Bronte Microbadge: English Literature fan
1863 - Auto pioneer Henry Ford Microbadge: Ford fan
1890 - Baseball player-manager Casey Stengel Microbadge: Baseball fan
1935 - 1st Penguin book published, starting the 'paperback revolution' Microbadge: Penguin Books fan
1947 - Bodybuilder-actor-governor Arnold Schwarzenegger Microbadge: Terminator fan
1961 - Actor Laurence Fishburne Microbadge: The Matrix fan

July 31
1956 - Actor Michael Biehn Microbadge: Alien fan
1962 - Actor Wesley Snipes (Blade trilogy) Microbadge: Blade fan
1965 - Author JK Rowling Microbadge: Harry Potter fan

I'm sure this list is incomplete. Feel free to offer suggestions for this and upcoming weeks. If you want your birthday included just add it to this geeklist: RPG Geek Birthday List
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Sun Jul 25, 2021 4:00 am
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Promoting your event on RPG Geek

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There are a lot of cool things that happen on RPG Geek, most of them sponsored by members or groups of members. It's easy to miss some or to have yours be the one that gets missed. This article is going to offer some suggestions on getting your event/contest/initiative noticed.

First Steps
Always make a thread to point to your new thing. If your thing is a geeklist, a thread announcing it is better because only threads can be front-pinned. No one can frontpin a geeklist.

Front pinning gets your post included in the Announcements section on the front page. To make it easy, put your thread in the RPG Geek News Forum or in one of the General Discussion forums; those are the ones that can be front-pinned easily.

To get it front-pinned, send a note to an admin. Not every admin can front-pin, but you can ask ctimmins, jasri, or adularia25. There are probably others, but they listed admins have told me in the past they'd like to be asked and are willing to help. Based on current activity, I'd probably ask in that order.

For Contests
If you're running a contest of some sort, you should definitely add it to the RPG Geek Contest Subscription Thread. If you'd like to know about new contests, you should subscribe to that thread.

Cross-Promote
There are other places on the site where you might be able to get more publicity for your contest or event.

RPGG News is the blog on the front page. It has a lot more than industry news and you should consider asking them to add it. I'd send a note to sdonohue or brumcg. There are others who could do it, but those two are probably most likely to post something different. sdonohue is always looking for more content for The Thursday Thing.

The Question of the Day can sometimes work for promotion depending on what you're doing. Sometimes the question is as obvious as "Will you participate in this contest?" and other times it's more subtle. Either way, ask pdzoch for help.

Rewards
Sometimes we offer rewards for winning or entering the contest. The most likely things are geek gold and microbadges.

For geek gold, the usual approach is to include a note in the message that anything tipped to the post will be distributed to the eventual winners. Other members will usually tip generously.

Microbadges are the other one. To hand them out, you need to get permission for a free badge unless you're a returning event that's had badges before. I would recommend asking kattvippa or adularia25 about permission.
Once you have permission, post a request on the RPGG Microbadges - Design, Discussion, Request and Fixes Thread. Even if you have the talent to do it yourself, they'll want to look at it and provide feedback before it gets accepted.
Once the badge is approved and you're ready to give them out, send a note with usernames to an admin. Adularia25 is usually the most likely.

Social Media
Don't be afraid to ask sdonohue to add a reference to your event on Facebook.

Contacting Admins
Remember that the admins may have real world obligations and/or live in a different timezone than you. Be patient!

What Else?
If you have suggestions, post them below.
If you feel like I've made a mistake, send me a geekmail and I'll happily correct it.
Thanks!
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Sat Jul 24, 2021 4:13 pm
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The Thursday Thing #4, July 22, 2021

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From gallery of sdonohue

The Thursday Thing might be a new feature depending on how people feel about it. The goal of The Thing is to highlight contests and other interesting things on RPG Geek.

Obviously, the banners and The Thursday Thing are still evolving, but I think the banners are getting better every week as we replace my "art" with Patrick's.

Suggestions are still welcome.

From gallery of sdonohue

How I got where I am via the Contribute/Add/Clone buttons
by agorski

Back in 2009 I created an account on BGG because I was getting back into board gaming and wanted to track my collection and plays.

Then RPG Geek happened. I was a fan of the Traveller RPG in all its forms and had a small collection of items and a bunch of old magazines with articles on Traveller. I also had access to a comprehensive list of all the Traveller items ever produced and the magazine issues that mentioned Traveller.

So I started helping flesh out the RPG Geek database with the items and issues that I owned, and added new things as I acquired them over those early years. This included a ton of image scans, even including images of ads in magazine issues. I joined the RPG Heroes guild when it started up and started adding magazine articles as well.

Today the database is pretty up-to-date concerning the things that I care about, but I still add the occasional item with images as I get them, and magazine issues with images and articles as I get them. So the pace of my contributions has gone down, but I still enjoy doing this.

I’ve also rated and commented on all the things that I own and continue to do that as well, hoping that others might find that useful.

From gallery of sdonohue

A new initiative has taken hold at RPG Geek. Teh RPG Spotlight focuses attention on different games with some stock questions and ideas about each of them. Even if you haven't played the game, Farydia has questions for you.
Here's the latest focus:
[RPG Spotlight] Introduction: What is this?


In guild RPG Newscasters Guild

Each week, we highlight a review we think you should take a gander at. This week, it's by gurpsgm, but it's not GURPS.
Better than it seems!

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This week's session of the week is by alhazared and if you like it, he's got the next few parts of the campaign ready for you.
Trouble in Somerlisse - Part 1: Watch Gap Fort


In guild RPG Newscasters Guild

Every day there's a new Question of the Day. Most of them are game-related but once in a while we get one that'a more geek-related like favorite movies or books. The question changes every day and you can even suggest a QOTD. When you check out this week's Question of the Week, you can see a link to all the old questions and the chance to suggest a question of your own. Here's this week's QOTD:
QOTD JUL 15: Would you play or run a non violent adventure where everyone involved just sat down and talked things out?


From gallery of sdonohue

This week we're pointing at a geeklist suggested by ctimmins. It's been around for over a decade, but it's the sort of list we could update pretty often. It's also good for a few laughs.
Weird RPG names


From gallery of sdonohue

Here are some other things you might want to check out.
Behind the Screen is an archive of advice by and for GMs written by members of our community.
Geek of the Week Month is a chance to learn more about our community members.
Contest Subscription Thread os where we go to find contests on the RPG side.
US RPG Chain of Generosity 2021 is where people in the US swap things they don't want for things they do.
Kickstarter RPG Game Books - 2021 is updated with all the latest RPG offerings.
RPG Spotlight Event Tracker is a focus on different games with questions and ideas. It's new, but gaining steam!
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Thu Jul 22, 2021 6:00 am
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Help Needed!

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I decided on a whim to include "In My Own Words" as part of The Thursday Thing.

Of course, that means I need people to write some things in their own words. Topics are pretty open and there's no reason we couldn't have two people write an article on the same topic. Different Perspectives and all.

I'd love to see ore people talk about why they do things on the geek. Not everyone writes reviews, plays PBF, documents sesssions, records plays, or whatever cool things you do the same way.

tldr: I need more people to write "In My Own Words articles. Please geekjmail them to me.


I could also use suggestions for Worth Remembering. If you've got an obscure list, post, or even homegrown game you'd like us to learn more about, just send me the link (and maybe a reason) through geekmail.


Please don't post your content here; it sort of ruins the surprise
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Mon Jul 19, 2021 5:15 pm
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The Thursday Thing #3, July 15, 2021

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From gallery of sdonohue

The Thursday Thing might be a new feature depending on how people feel about it. The goal of The Thing is to highlight contests and other interesting things on RPG Geek.

Check out our new banner compliments of the Banner Makers Guild.

Suggestions are welcome.

From gallery of sdonohue

Why I Write Reviews
by Bryce Lynch

A group at work was talking about restaurants. One man spoke up: "Chili's! Man, I love that place it's AWESOME!" Now, this did not match my recollection of Chili's. The epitome of American corporate chain restaurant food, I would place it one notch above Applebees. Whatever your tastes, I would certainly not describe the food as AWESOME. So, I asked him "On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being the best, how would you rate it?" He replied "a 3."

In the late 2000's I returned to D&D. In an epiphany with Lacuna & Fiasco, I found the experience that Story Games provided to be hollow. I wanted more Game and less Activity, and thus found my way back to D&D. Which, at that time, meant The OSR.

I was excited, I joined several forums. There were recommendations seemingly everywhere for exciting new adventures! GenCon was just a month away! I made a list, checked it twice, and warmed up the old Credit Card for that magical wonderland that everyone should visit at least once in their lifetime: the GenCon dealer hall.

I came home with $1,500 in new adventure modules. I settled in to a chair in wide eyed wonder and anticipation of the glory of new adventure to come!

And they sucked. Sucked HARD. To this day, that initial buy was one of the worst batch of adventures I've ever seen. Boring. Overwritten. Disorganized. And, yet, there were all these people online saying how good these particular adventures were. Fanboys. People confusing "I like D&D!" with "This D&D thing is good!" I sat down with a notebook to take some notes on why they were bad. Then, I though, "Meh, I'll put my notes online" ... and thus the tenfootpole blog was born. It's my own diary/notepad on adventures; what is good about them and what makes them bad.

As time went on a few things became apparent. I was going to spend money on RPG's. It was a fact. And yet this clashed somewhat with my minimalist lifestyle. Reviewing became a way to feed the spend money on RPG's" addiction, while keeping the material possessions under control.

I continue to write for me, primarily, as my sole audience. That other people find some usefulness in them is a bit gratifying, but, my motivations remain that of Just A Dude Looking For Some Good Content.

From gallery of sdonohue

This week's review of the week is brought to us by Bryce0lynch and is an OSR adventure.
The Real Deal Lost City Adventure... but needs a major overhaul
We had lots of reviews to choose from this week, thanks everyone!

From gallery of sdonohue

This week's session of the week is for Star Wars and its written by Dutys_Fist
Murder in Mos Shuuta: Taking lowlifes to new lows

From gallery of sdonohue

Every day there's a new Question of the Day. Most of them are game-related but once in a while we get one that'a more geek-related like favorite movies or books. The question changes every day and you can even suggest a QOTD. When you check out this week's Question of the Week, you can see a link to all the old questions and the chance to suggest a question of your own. Here's this week's QOTD:
QOTD JUL 13: What do you do on RPGGeek?

From gallery of sdonohue

Here are some other things you might want to check out.
Behind the Screen is an archive of advice by and for GMs written by members of our community.
Geek of the Week Month is a chance to learn more about our community members.
Contest Subscription Thread os where we go to find contests on the RPG side.
US RPG Chain of Generosity 2021 is where people in the US swap things they don't want for things they do.
Kickstarter RPG Game Books - 2021 is updated with all the latest RPG offerings.
RPG Geek: Building Community is the place to introduce yourself and get a free microbadge out of it.
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Thu Jul 15, 2021 6:00 am
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Graphic Help Needed.

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We've asked the members of the Banner Makers Guild to take a look at creating some banners for the RPGG News, including our regular columns and a few other things.

If you'd like to be part of the discussion, we'd love to hear your thoughts at:
Help me banner makers, you're my only hope!
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Tue Jul 13, 2021 1:03 am
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The Thursday Thing #2, July 8, 2021

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From gallery of sdonohue

The Thursday Thing might be a new feature depending on how people feel about it. The goal of The Thing is to highlight contests and other interesting things on RPG Geek.

I moved "In My Own Words" up to the top so people won't miss it after the rest of the wall of text. I also added some links to popular items at the bottom.

Suggestions are still welcome.

From gallery of sdonohue

Solo Gaming
Hello! Hello!!!

I'm Eric Miller (govmiller here and other places) and I'm the current Manager/Chief flunky in Charge of the Solo Roleplaying guild: (Solo Roleplaying)

Why Roleplay? The stories! The settings! The characters! And Dice! (I like dice, but they don't like me...) I've been dabbling in various RPGs since the late 70's. Started with D&D, but soon branched over to Traveler for a bit. The one I really got behind was The Fantasy Trip. Why? Two things: It is a simpler system than D&D... And...

It had solo adventures.

These were mostly Choose Your Own Adventure (CYOA) games, but with all the familiar Fantasy Trip stuff.

These solo adventures meant I could play when I wanted and I didn't have to set aside any other games I was in. So I could play D&D/Traveler with friends, and I could then solo TFT in and around my other commitments.

I could make up the stories- add to the dialog and settings. I was not only the player, but also the GM setting the world. I could sit back and build worlds (or at least Fantasy Trip dungeons) and then go through them. I'm not sure which I enjoyed more- the building or the playing! And that's still true today!

And today, there are SO MANY more RPGs to explore! And there are so many tools to help out! We have lots of lists and links over in the Guild- there really are too many to list here. Some tools are geared more toward some types of games, others are much more generic in nature. So I can take one of these 'GM' systems and play Pathfinder. Then switch and play Starfinder. Or I could go 'old school' and play D&D, or something newer in Savage Worlds or FATE.

Even now, I'm in PbF game of Empire of the Petal Throne, and I can do some Top Secret: New World Order on my own.

Lastly, if I really want to get into the storytelling/journalling part, there are a number of games that use dice or playing cards to provide prompts. I can do a haunted house, go to space, etc. all with pen & paper and deck of regular playing cards. These are really nice options when I don't feel like doing much work as GM and would rather be the player. Most of the 'GM' systems/emulators really don't require much work- there are cards or tables to use, and many of the results are flexible. YOU choose what/where/why/how to keep the story going!

Why Roleplay? The stories! The settings! The characters! There are no limits when going solo....!

So give solo roleplaying a shot. There are monthly geeklists where folks post/share their stories and adventures.

Thanks!

Solo RPG Links (there are a lot, these are samples):
Solo RPG on Your Table - July 2021
Solo Roleplaying


From gallery of sdonohue

In brainstorming some new content for RPG Geek, the idea of featuring specific games or items comes up often. If you'd like to join the discussion, check out this thread:
Interest Check: RPGG Item Spotlight Series

From gallery of sdonohue

Each week, we'll try to draw attention to an exciting review written by a member of our community. This week's review is of one of the entries in our recent 2021 RPG Geek 24 Hour Supplement Contest
The Short Version? Among the Archives is an interesting game, but it's not really a supplement.

From gallery of sdonohue

Session reports detail what's happened in someone's game. You can use them for inspiration, steal ideas, or just enjoy reading them. Each week we'll try to highlight an interesting session report written in the last week.
Raven's Purge Campaign - Session #14: Fly, you fools!
We could definitely use more session reports!


From gallery of sdonohue

Every day there's a new Question of the Day. Most of them are game-related but once in a while we get one that'a more geek-related like favorite movies or books. The question changes every day and you can even suggest a QOTD. When you check out this week's Question of the Week, you can see a link to all the old questions and the chance to suggest a question of your own. Here's this week's QOTD:
QOTD JUL 5: Is Romeroading any better than railroading? Do certain types of games, e.g. investigation, require Romeroading?

From gallery of sdonohue

Here are some things you might have missed that could be of interest:
Community Goals could let you help chart goals for the future of the community.
RPG Geek Birthday List lets you get included in the world-famous Geek History Column

From gallery of sdonohue

First off, let's clear the deck with this statement: I don't know everything about using the 'Geek. I kind of think no one does, probably not even Aldie. This section will talk about something that I've either seen recent questions about or think could use some attention.

This week we're going to talk about a feature of the site which could probably help most of us: Guilds are smaller discussion groups for subjects of interest to its members.

You can access them from the Community Menu:
From gallery of sdonohue


Once there you'll be at the main Guilds page. Unfortunately, there isn't a way to search them that I know of, so you'll just have to take a guess and find the guild you want. You can also create a new guild.

My advice would be not to select "View All" as there are a lot; try to choose a category and look for it there.

The big thing is that if you Create a guild, you get a lot of control over what happens in the guild. You can pin posts, create events, and do a ton of other things to customize it for your interests and to serve your group.

From gallery of sdonohue

Here are some other things you might want to check out.
Behind the Screen is an archive of advice by and for GMs written by members of our community.
Geek of the Week Month is a chance to learn more about our community members.
Contest Subscription Thread os where we go to find contests on the RPG side.
US RPG Chain of Generosity 2021 is where people in the US swap things they don't want for things they do.
Kickstarter RPG Game Books - 2021 is updated with all the latest RPG offerings.
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Thu Jul 8, 2021 7:00 am
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The Thursday Thing #1, July 1, 2021

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The Thursday Thing might be a new feature depending on how people feel about it. The goal of The Thing is to highlight contests and other interesting things on RPG Geek.

From gallery of sdonohue

24-hour contests are nothing new to the 'Geek, but this one is new. The maestro of the 24-hour creativity challenge is
Robb Minneman
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Jackasses? You let a whole column get stalled and strafed on account of a couple of jackasses? What the hell's the matter with you?
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and he's created a new contest to make maps in a day. If you want to get the detail or enter, here's the link:
Announcing the 2021 24 Hour RPG Cartography Contest

From gallery of sdonohue

Each week, we'll try to draw attention to an exciting review written by a member of our community. This week's review isn't so much an item as a tool of our trade.
The Bo Derek of Polyhedra

From gallery of sdonohue

Session reports detail what's happened in someone's game. You can use them for inspiration, steal ideas, or just enjoy reading them. Each week we'll try to highlight an interesting session report written in the last week.
Pt 3. Heart of Glass

From gallery of sdonohue

Every day there's a new Question of the Day. Most of them are game-related but once in a while we get one that'a more geek-related like favorite movies or books. The question changes every day and you can even suggest a QOTD. When you check out this week's Question of the Week, you can see a link to all the old questions and the chance to suggest a question of your own. Here's this week's QOTD:
QOTD JUN 25: Do you prefer that GMs and other players use genre sounding names, or are you okay with Kevin the elf ranger?

From gallery of sdonohue

This section will talk about something you might have missed or promote ongoing contests and events. This week, it's the venerable RPG Geek Review Contest. The contest has changed form, but it started in 2011.
2021 Annual Geek Review Challenge

From gallery of sdonohue

First off, let's clear the deck with this statement: I don't know everything about using the 'Geek. I kind of thing no one does, probably not even Aldie. This section will talk about something that I've either seen recent questions about or think could use some attention.

This week, it's Geekmod. Geekmod is short for Geek Moderation and it's basically a tool that allows the members of the community to decide if content is worthy of inclusion on the 'Geek. Back in the old days, most things were approved by admins and things took a lot longer.

Any community member can help moderate the content of the site. Community members are asked to evaluate Images, Videos, Links (usually of pictures to items or people), Articles (session reports and reviews, and Data (representative images).

To access geekmod, use the Community menu at the top. Click on community and you'll see a dropdown menu; at the top right will be the word Geekmod. Click that and you'll go the geekmod section.
From gallery of sdonohue


Once you click, you'll got the Geekmod page. It looks very different than the normal 'Geek page; the topbar and sidebars go away and you're left with this:
From gallery of sdonohue


Across the top is a list of things you could geekmod. In the blue box next to the item is the number of things you can moderate in that category. If it's a 0, there's nothing for you to see. If you've submitted something, you won't be able to vote on it and the number will be non-zero. The page includes instructions on how to geekmod.

For most things, you just vote yes or no, but a few things will have a spot where you can Decline, Approve or Approve with Thumb. For articles (session reports and reviews), you can also choose how many geekgold you think the person deserves for their contribution. This geekgold comes from the site, not your personal account, so a little generosity won't hurt you.

I think that's it. When you're done, click on the Return to RPGG link at the top right.

From gallery of sdonohue

I kind of hope this will be a section that's open to anyone who'd like to have something show up in the news. The idea is to have people talk about things that are important to them or that they think are important for other users to hear. If you want to contribute, please send me a message.

The first one is from me, since I didn't do much planning to get this started.

Everyone needs to understand that their opinion matters. Whether you've been playing for 40 years or 40 minutes, we'd like to hear your thoughts and opinions. We're all different and, despite what you might think, none of us are really experts. Sometimes when you read a post, it will seem like someone knows more than you. It doesn't matter. Most of the 'Geek is about what you think. The tapestry of the community is way better than the voice of a single person, no matter their expertise.

One thing I always try to remember is some wisdom I heard a long time ago about planning things in Scouting: "You might be smarter than any of us, but you aren't smarter than all of us".
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Thu Jul 1, 2021 4:25 pm
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Community Goals Return?

Steve
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Allen Park
Michigan
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That's probaby some crap over there.
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Years ago, RPG Geek had a set of community goals for each year to help us grow the site and the community.

I've started a discussion here:
Community Goals

If you're interested or think this is a terrible idea, please share your thoughts.
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Tue Jun 29, 2021 7:15 pm
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Help Gamer Wan Kenobi, you're my only hope!

Steve
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Allen Park
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That's probaby some crap over there.
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Clark has recently started an effort related to the book "One Hundred Monsters Ancient and Modern" (1781) by Toriyama Sekien.

The goal is to take the illustrated monsters and describe them in general terms. No character or stat sheets required, just do the sort of things that describe the outlook, environment, appearance, and description of the creature. Throw in some ideas on how it might fight and you're there. It's not about stat-blocks or a specific game system. Your objective is just to tell us what the thing is.

The thread is here: Monster Recovery Effort
There are still 50 unclaimed creatures so if you want to be part of an interesting creative effort, now is your chance.
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Mon Apr 19, 2021 11:46 pm
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